Housing crises usually go hand in hand with a long lasting recession and a considerable loss in output. We first re-examine the effects of a housing crises on the business cycle based on historical crises. Then we estimate the international spill-over-effects if several huge industrial countries face a housing crisis simultaneously. While the economic impact of the housing crisis in the United States, from a historical perspective, should have bottomed out at the end of 2008 and the business cycle pattern differed significantly from that in a typical crisis, house prices in Great Britain, Spain and France just started to drop at the end of 2007. If we assume that a typical housing crisis occurs in all of these three countries, international transmission effects then would lead to significant losses of GDP growth in several other countries, notably in Europe.